The Night House

The Night House ★★★★½

Like a sophisticated riff on ‘What Lies Beneath’ that’s been re-calibrated for a new generation, The Night House feels much like that widowed relative in the background of family photos who ever so slowly starts to fade from the celluloid as time eats away at their soulless, grieving image. Yet, perhaps the most terrifying thing about Bruckner’s study of psychological torment isn’t his twisted (almost phantasmagorical) visuals that paint such a malevolent atmosphere or that he submerges us in a level of Hitchcockian suspense to an almost nauseating degree, it’s the director’s ingenious utilisation of interior architecture and symmetrical spaces, and how those structures can form the darkest corners of our minds. Amongst bloody moons split between creeping fog and the tightly-constructed scares that could only be described as winding up a toy monkey who then clangs his tambourines in your ear at the most unexpected of moments, Bruckner’s asphyxiating, nightmarish puzzle box of a thriller finds a dark divide between sorrow and mystery to bury us deep into a grave where love and the devil can be found decomposing side-by-side.

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